Whether you’re a film star, a rock star or a sports star (hell, nowadays even if you’re a reality star) if you fit into the bracket of ‘celebrity’, you stand to earn big money. From paid public appearances, and charging for autographs, to some really shameless brand endorsements, the word ‘celebrity’ has become synonymous with success.
Of course, there’s another (more discreet) way to earn big money if you’re a celebrity. Listed below are five international superstars who, instead of resorting to syndicated sex tapes, used their investor foresight and business acumen to help establish some money-minting machines.
Shots by Justin Bieber
Justin Bieber may make the news every now and then for all the wrong reasons, but the “Baby” hitmaker knows a good thing when he sees one. Bieber backed Shots, a selfie photo-sharing app and social network. According to TechCrunch, Shots was a flop when it first launched but after two rounds of seed funding and some heavy brand endorsing by Bieber, Shots saw its user base skyrocket. According to CNET, nearly 75 percent of the app’s users are females under the age of 24… Go figure?
Mobli by Leonardo DiCaprio
Needless to say Leonardo DiCaprio is one of the most talented actors to have ever appeared on the silver screen. His performance in ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ alone was nothing short of Oscar-worthy (not to mention ‘Catch me if you can’, ‘Blood Diamond’ and ‘The Departed’). Man, the Academy really gotta get their sh*t together… Anyway, I digress.
In addition to being a gifted actor and committed environmentalist, Leo is also an investor in Mobli, a social mobile photo and video-sharing website. As of September 2014 Mobli has a reported 22 million users.
Backplane by Lady Gaga
When you’re invested in the same company as former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, you know you’re in good hands! The ‘Poker Face’ star showed incredible foresight when she decided to invest in Backplane, a platform where anyone can build and monetize on their social networks. No guesses as to where the business falls in Google’s rankings…
Airbnb by Ashton Kutcher
Considered by many to be one of Hollywood’s sharpest investors in tech start-ups, it’s no surprise to see Ashton Kutcher on this list. The ‘Two and a Half Men’ star boasts an impressive portfolio including investments in Skype, Foursquare, Path and Airbnb — a website for people to rent out lodging… Needless to say today he’s rolling in it.
Funny or Die by Will Ferrell
Funnyman Will Ferrell and ‘Anchorman’ director Adam McKay were the Founders behind the Emmy-winning comedy video website Funny or Die. The site boasts exclusive user generated content and has even featured contributions from some of the biggest names in Hollywood including: Daniel Radcliffe, Jim Carrey and Charlie Sheen (to name a few). Today, the brand has grown to five franchises including a Funny or Die UK.